Fort Bragg, California

Port Orford to Fort Bragg.

A nice clear and bright day for a drive down the coast.   Sea stacks, huge waves and immense vistas interspersed with winding roads through huge forests (Redwoods, sometimes).

We came across Trinidad, California, and I remembered that a friend had grown up here so we stopped and had a nice drive around town and then sat on a bluff overlooking the bay.

I’ve looked at many places on this trip through my ‘what if I lived here glasses’.   It seems to be a traveling hazard with me.   I cannot help but try to see every place we go through in this light.   Trinidad certainly got favorable marks.

But then, so have many, many of the places we’ve passed through or stayed in.   It makes me wonder why so many of us simply stay with what is familiar and known to us.   The world is so huge and the possibilities so many.   To get up in the morning and look out in a city scape from 20 stories up, to wake to the smell of the sea breeze and the look out and see the vast ocean pounding against the continental shore, to walk out and find your house surrounded by deep, mystical woods.    Vancouver, Port Townsend, Santa Barbara, the list is very long and everyone of them contains a new life.

We’ve been keen to see the redwoods and at one point we wandered for 30 minutes on a trail through a deep forest of them and shot some photos that made us look so small.    

Later, just as I was about to switch from highway 101 to coastal highway 1 en route to Fort Bragg, we saw a come-on sign for the ‘drive-through tree’.   Whoop!   We had to go.

What fun.  Colette was like a little girl in her excitement about the ‘drive-through tree’.   She really made me smile.   A couple of fellows on Harley motorcycles were there too taking photos and I shot pictures of them on their camera coming through and they returned the favor for us.  Inside the gift shop, we bought a couple of ice creams and drove off quite happy with our small adventure.

From there, we took the road to the coast and it was a long, twisting, two-lane road through the coastal range that took over an hour to traverse.  As we began, it was deep twilight and long before we emerged to the sea, it was dark.   It was one of those roads you don’t want to make a mistake on.

But, it all worked out and soon we found ourselves in Fort Bragg where we found a nice room for the night and had another of Colette’s evening salads with materials gleaned from Safeway.


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